Saturday, November 24, 2012

Trophy Dust Bunnies

Athletes compete to make the play-offs.  If effort and luck shine on coaches, managers, players, owners, and fans, two franchises make it to games such as the Superbowl, World Series, Stanley Cup or other legendary competitions.  Olympians dedicate four years to earn those few seconds or minutes they have to claim gold. Hunters spend seasons seeking the biggest buck, bull elk, caribou or other record setting trophy to decorate the family room.  After a week of packing a house we lived in for 16 years, I have decided homemakers need their own prize.

Athletes and hunters have to meet criteria to claim victory.  Sports competitions require speed, strength,  and skill.  Game stalkers’ strive to meet or exceed state, Pope and Young, or Boone and Crockett records.  To have their competitions taken seriously, housekeepers need to establish a list of golden qualities to identify champion dust bunnies.

After the last two weeks, I may be perfectly qualified to establish those norms.  We have sorted, packed, and cleaned a house we lived in for 16 years.  When I say lived in, I mean that.  This was no model home where people took shoes off at the door, pets stayed outside, or folks ate  only at the table.  Grit made its way to odd corners, pet hair is part of the vacuum bag collection, and a handy bottle of Resolve took care of spills.

Despite my statement this was not a model home, I dusted, vacuumed, and mopped once or twice a week.  I thought I was a stellar housekeeper until we started moving items that hadn’t exactly taken root but hadn’t seen a new locale for a long time.  If there had been a season on dust bunnies, and I had had a shotgun, I would have golden trophies to dust.

After the initial embarrassment of realizing I wasn’t the homemaker I thought I was, I took an analytical approach.  These were dandy fuzz collections and deserved respect for their length and circumference.  I suspect dark corners under heavy cabinets lend themselves to breeding a super species of these critters, as that is where I found the best examples.  

Looking at the constituent parts of these monsters, I see that drafts found a way into household caverns to roll that first speck of dirt or hair into another and another and another until the collected mass needed a name. Looking at these artistically, the mixture of elements enhanced their integrity.

After seeing each trophy’s individuality, it was hard to attack them with the vacuum cleaner.  I knew once they were sucked into the inner workings of that machine, they’d lose their uniqueness and turn into either a giant glob of dust, hair, and fiber or they’d separate into individual components during their journey from the beater brushes to the collection bag. 

Okay, so this is a lot tongue in cheek, but I did find some dandy dust bunnies that deserved recognition for size and form.  What I do know is that real housekeeper Olympics would award prizes for the contestant  who found the fewest and smallest of these creatures.  Folks who grow humongous dust based creations would receive scorn rather than accolades.  

My goal in my new home is to model myself after the Amish Cook who thoroughly empties and cleans her home twice a year.  That ought to keep fuzzballs at bay and me busy enough I can’t make up stories about trophy dust bunnies.

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